Recently, I had the privilege of attending the national GEAR UP (Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs) Annual Conference in Washington D.C. organized by the National Council for Community and Education Partnerships (NCCEP). GEAR UP grantees from all over the United States and U.S. territories attended the event. It was inspiring to be in the presence of so many people passionate about bringing underrepresented students into the realm of higher education. I learned more about the GEAR UP evaluation and some skills and ideas that will translate well into other areas of my work. As one example, I attended a session that described the importance of attendance patterns and disciplinary records in predicting persistence in postsecondary education (not dropping out of college but persisting through to a degree). The speaker described how attendance and disciplinary patterns might summarize certain values like persistence in reference to postsecondary education.
As this was my first time to our nation’s capital, I did explore the city some before the conference. I walked the mall (from the capital building to the Lincoln Memorial) and was able to go to two museums. I think a week would be needed to thoroughly explore all that there is to offer in D.C.
Have you been on any enjoyable trips lately?